Titans internship opens up opportunity for women in ‘guys game’

Sports

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – At this year’s NFL Combine, Mike Vrabel and Jon Robinson attended a women in sports seminar.

It wasn’t just for show or to check a box.

Their attendance got the ball rolling on a new internship program with the Titans organization.

“I think just for a long time it has been male dominated and its a guys game,” said Mical Johnson, Titans scouting intern.

So, the Titans added a little feminine touch to their football operations.

“I think its great. I think it’s like a step in the right direction as far as changing the culture, the environment and just getting some different perspectives in the building is very valuable. I think it’s exciting for the Titans and it’s also exciting for the NFL and just changing that environment,” she said.

Johnson is part of the Titans new Women in Sports internship. The program is named after controlling owner Amy Adams Strunk, but spearheaded by general manager Jon Robinson. The goal of the internship is to open up the world of football to more women, but Johnson doesn’t just observe. They put her to work.

“Kind of seeing the behind the scenes of how in depth they’re going with each guy even with off field stuff and on field. Just the overall scope of it, I’ve just loved it from the start.”

The former Belmont tennis player works closely with the Titans’ player personnel department and helps when guys are brought in for workouts. No, she didn’t play football, but that’s proven to be a unique asset.

“I think for me right now I’m probably seeing more of the bigger picture things whereas they’ve been in it for such a long time, that they played football. Obviously I did not, so they’re very into some of the nitty-gritty details that are also very important, but I feel like I have the unique perspective of a little more big picture of how it’s all going to work together. I think it is a value to them in the room.”

A perspective the team would have never gotten without adding in a female to a male-dominated world.

“For someone to think that a girl would be capable, unfortunately, they may not think it’s a possibility, but starting with some internship programs or volunteer opportunities to get more people in and just get them some exposure to this stuff, I think people will start to see there is some really good opportunities and there is some value to this,” said Johnson.

A Week 3 match-up between Cleveland and Washington featured the first-ever NFL game with a female coach on both sidelines and a female referee.

“It is so cool. I just love it. I love hearing these sort of stories and seeing other teams hiring other females and with the Titans I had my internship opportunity, but they also had Christie in strength and conditioning. So just to see other women in here, it’s so exciting to see it start to change.

The end goal? For women like Johnson to not simply be a female coach in the NFL, but to be referred to as just a coach.


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